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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

PALAK POORI / PALAK PURI

PALAK POORI, PALAK PURI, HOW TO MAKE PALAK POORI

INGREDIENTS:

Wheat flour (atta) - 2 cups

Palak  - 1 bunch (Approximately 3/4 -1 cup of puree)
Green chilly - 1
Salt- to taste ( I used 1/2 tsp.)

Oil - to deep fry
METHOD:

Clean palak and take out the leaves. Discard the stem. Blanch (Put in hot boiling water for 2 minutes, drain completely and run under cold water) the palak and grind it  alongwith green chilly and salt to a puree.


Take an easy to knead bowl, put in the atta, palak puree and mix it to a stiff dough. Add very little water if necessary. Knead well. 

Make small balls out of the dough. Flatten each ball with a roller using oil, and roll it out to pooris. (Oil for frying will be very clear if the dough is flattened with oil). Alternatively you can also dust with flour, but oil will not be clear.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a pan and when hot, drop the rolled poori gently into it. When it puffs up, turn it to the other side. Serve hot with tomato thokku or any bhaji of your choice. 

Sunday, September 27, 2015

CABBAGE MEDHU PAKODA / CABBAGE PAKODA

CABBAGE MEDHU PAKODA, CABBAGE PAKODA

A NO ONION NO GARLIC RECIPE but tastes similar to onion pakoda. Suitable for vrat days. It is crispy outside and soft inside and hence called medhu pakoda. Medhu in Tamil means soft. 

INGREDIENTS:

Cabbage - 1 cup (tightly packed)
Gram flour - 1 cup
Rice four - 1/3 cup
Cumin seeds - 1/4 tsp.
Green chillies - 1 (finely chopped)
Curry leaves  - a sprig
Red chilli powder - 1/2 tsp.
Salt - to taste
Hing  - a generous pinch
Oil - to deep fry

METHOD:

Chop cabbage roughly, add little salt and keep it aside. After 10 minutes, mix well and squeeze out the water. Discard the water.  Mix all other ingredients, add water little by little and make a thick batter.  Mix well. Heat oil. Take a small portion from the batter and drop it gently into the oil. Ensure medium heat of oil and put 5 or 6 in a batch. This depends on how much oil you heat. Likewise, do with the rest of the batter. Flip on all sides until golden brown. Serve hot with tomato ketchup or chutney. 


Monday, September 21, 2015

MILLETS AND OATS KARA PANIYARAM / MILLETS KARA PANIYARAM

MILLETS KARA PANIYARAM RECIPE, MILLETS KARA PANIYARAM

MILLETS KARA PANIYARAM RECIPE, MILLETS KARA PANIYARAM

INGREDIENTS:

Oats - 1/2 cup (dry roasted and powdered)
Roasted rava - 2 tablespoon
Grated ginger - 1/2 tsp.
Green chillies - 2 (Finely chopped)
Chopped cabbage - 1/4 cup
Coriander leaves - 2 tablespoons(finely chopped)

Hing - a generous pinch
Salt - to taste
Oil - to fry

To soak and grind :
Red rice aval (poha) or thick poha - 1/3 cup
Varagu OR any millet - 1/2 cup
Gram dhal - 1/4 cup
Tur dhal - 1/4 cup
Moong dhal - 1 tablespoon
Dry red chillies - 2

To temper:
Mustard seeds - 1/2 tsp.
Cumin seeds - 1/2 tsp.
Oil - 1 tsp.
Curry leaves - 2 tsp. (
roughly chopped)


MILLETS KARA PANIYARAM RECIPE, MILLETS KARA PANIYARAM

METHOD:


Dry roast and powder oats. 

Soak together for 3 hours and coarsely grind the items given in "To soak and grind". Add all other ingredients. Temper with the given ingredients. Mix well.

Heat oil in a "paniyaram mould", pour the batter to 3/4th of the holes. Ensure medium heat. Cover with a lid for 2 minutes. When the bottom portion is light brown in colour, flip with stick or spoon to the other side and cook until golden brown on both sides. Repeat the procedure for the rest of the batter.

Serve hot with chutney or ketchup.


NOTE: Mixed vegetables and onions can also be used. 

Saturday, September 19, 2015

ELLORAI

ELLORAI , HOW TO MAKE ELLORAI

INGREDIENTS:

Cooked rice - 2 cups
Ellu podi - 3 teaspoons
Mustard seeds - 1/4 teaspoon
Salt - as per taste
Curry leaves - few
Ghee - 2 tsp.

METHOD:


Make ellu podi as said here.


In a kadai, heat ghee add mustard seeds and allow it to splutter. Then add curry leaves. Add this to the cooked rice. Add salt, Ellu podi
and mix well. Ellorai is ready. This rice is made during purattasi (tamil month) saturdays and on maavilakku day.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

VAZHUKKU KOZHUKATTAI / KALLU KOZHUKATTAI / KAL KOZHUKATTAI

Forgotten food, forgotten indian  food, How to make kallu kozhukattai, How to make vazhukku kozhukattai

My grandma makes this traditional recipe. You can say this as a forgotten food, as I never came across this recipe anywhere while browsing and thought of sharing this traditional recipe with all. It is a big hit in our home. This is a spicy kozhukattai. As the name suggests, this tasty vazhukku kozhukattai will be sticky and semi gravy. 'Kal' in Tamil is stone and coloquially called 'kallu'. So, this is named as 'kallu kozhukattai' as it is stone sized and stone shaped. It is also called 'vazhukku kozhukattai' as it is sticky, slips in the mouth and easy to swallow. It is different from neer kozhukattai and kanji kozhukattai. I had asked my amma for this recipe long back and also took notes of it, but I did not make it till now. Recently my mother gave me the recipe and said, 'Un blogla idhai podu, munnellam pillaiyar chaturthikkum pannuvaa' meaning 'you post this is your blog, earlier this was done during ganesh chaturthi also'. 

INGREDIENTS: 

Idli rice - 2 cups
Toor dhal - 1/2 cup
Dry red chillies - 5 or 6
Grated coconut - 2 tablespoons
Asafoetida - sundakkai (turkey berry) size
Curry leaves - 3 sprigs
Salt - to taste
Water - 5 cups + little more

To temper:
Coconut oil - 2 tsp.
Mustard seeds - 1/4 tsp. 
Split urad dhal - 1 tsp.
Dry red chilli - 1
Curry leaves - few

METHOD:

Soak rice, dhal and chillies for 3 hours. Add very little water and grind to a very fine, smooth, thick paste alongwith salt and other ingredients. The batter should be as thick as possible. Anyway, little water should be added to grind fine, so wrap the batter in a clean towel to absorb excess water. The batter will now be like a dough. It should be easy to shape balls and should not stick in your hands. Pinch small balls out of the dough and keep ready. The balls need not be very perfect, shape roughly like balls. The consistency should be like the below picture.


Forgotten food, forgotten indian  food, How to make kallu kozhukattai, How to make vazhukku kozhukattaiForgotten food, forgotten indian  food, How to make kallu kozhukattai, How to make vazhukku kozhukattai
Collage pictures taken by my sister

Meanwhile, in a deep vessel or cooker, pour water and allow it to boil. Put about 10-15 balls in the boiling water for a batch. Do not put it in the same place, put it scattered in water. Initially, it goes to the bottom and when cooked it floats on top. Stir in between. Now put the next batch of 10 balls. Do not take out the previous batch of balls. Repeat the procedure until all balls are done. Keep some more hot water also ready. If necessary, you can add it. The whole mixture will become glossy and the kozhukattais when pressed will be slightly hard. This is the consistency. The kozhukattais should not be too dry or too watery. The correct consistency should be like this. Temper with the given ingredients.
Serve hot or warm. Vazhukku kozhakattai / Kallu kozhakattai is ready.

NOTE: While boiling in water the salt and spice reduces, so add little more to the batter or according to your spice levels.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

A COMPLETE GUIDE ON VINAYAGA /GANESHA CHATURTHI CELEBRATION

HOW TO CELEBRATE GANESHA CHATURTHI, GANESHA CHATURTHI RECIPES, VINAYAGA CHATURTHI RECIPES

Lord Ganesha is the God of knowledge, wisdom, prosperity and good fortune. Ganesha is called Vinayagar and also as Pillaiyar in Tamil Nadu. Vinayagar is worshipped by everyone, before starting any new work in any field. Vinayaga chaturthi or Pillaiyar chaturthi is an important festival of Hindu religion. The festival falls on the fourth day after new moon in the Tamil month aavani. It is celebrated to welcome Lord Ganesha on his birthday and is celebrated by Hindus around the world. This festival is celebrated in in India with great enthusiasm and devotion. This festival is also known as the Ganesha Chaturthi or Vinayaka Chavithi. On this day Ganesh idols made of clay are worshipped in all homes. It is known as 'kaliman pillayar' in Tamil. People pray with full devotion and faith and throng to Ganesha temples and pray HIM to get knowledge and wealth and worship 'Ekadanta'. Pray Ganesha with faith and devotion and HE will remove all the obstacles in your life.

How to celebrate?

On the previous day, clean the pooja items, lamps, idols if any. Apply chandan, kumkum to the idols, lamps, wick them and keep ready.

Soak fistful of rice for 2,3 hours and grind to a fine paste. Dilute it to a semi- thick solution. This is called 'izhai kolam maavu' which we make during festivals to put kolam.


Mango leaves for thoran.

Things to purchase and arrange:

Garlands with cotton wick, a small vastram (pillaiyar towel), poonal for pillaiyar, chattar(decorative small umbrella), flowers, fruits preferably guava and vilampazham (wood apple), coconut, betel leaves, betel nuts, erukam poo OR erukam poo garlands, arungampul. These will be available in plenty in the market on the previous day. You can shop for it. Also keep ready turmeric powder, kumkum, sandal powder, camphor, incense sticks, gingelly oil or ghee for lamp. These will always be available at home. If not, shop for it too. Put 'izhai kolam' in wooden planks. Things can be arranged according to the rituals done in one's home. However, even if one cannot afford to buy and celebrate in an elaborate manner, it is enough just to chant and pray with full devotion and faith.

Some people do gowri pooja on the previous day. On the day of Vinayaga Chaturthi, wash and put kolam in the frontyard. Take head bath early in the morning, wear clean clothes, clean the pooja room or the place where the idol is to be kept, put a kolam and keep the 'kaliman pillaiyar' on wooden planks (put kolam on the plank too) or raised platforms. Put poonool and tie vastram to the earthen idol. Decorate with chandan and kumkum. Decorate with garlands, erukam poo (don't know the English name, google for it) and with "Bermuda grass" known as arugampul in Tamil. 



HOW TO CELEBRATE GANESHA CHATURTHI, GANESHA CHATURTHI RECIPES, VINAYAGA CHATURTHI RECIPES
HOW TO CELEBRATE GANESHA CHATURTHI, GANESHA CHATURTHI RECIPES, VINAYAGA CHATURTHI RECIPES

In some houses, the idol is given a bath with pure water and then decorated. Some do abishekam also. Some do Ganapathi homam. Aval pori with jaggery and coconut pieces are also made for homam and prasadam.


HOW TO CELEBRATE GANESHA CHATURTHI, GANESHA CHATURTHI RECIPES, VINAYAGA CHATURTHI RECIPES

Pray to Ganesha /Vinayaka by chanting mantras, and devotional songs. Tell vinayagar agaval, or any slokas on Ganesha and do archana with flowers and guava leaves. 

Various dishes are cooked for offerings. Modakam is known to be HIS favourite sweet and is the main dish made on this day.  Arrange neivedyams, tamboolam and fruits in pooja room. Offer Modakam, ladoo and all other neivedhyams after doing pooja to Pillaiyar and finally take aarathi.


HOW TO CELEBRATE GANESHA CHATURTHI, GANESHA CHATURTHI RECIPES, VINAYAGA CHATURTHI RECIPES

However, these are procedures done as per family traditions and many books are available in stores as to how to perform the pooja. The slokas can be googled and books are available in stores as well.


Do punarpooja the next day with a payasam and do the visarjan  in a well or river. In Tamilnadu, people take the kaliman pillayar from their homes and keep in the temple near the peepal tree vinayagar. 

For neivedhyam: Click the recipe name for  recipe links. Various dishes are cooked for offerings. In North India, Karanji, ladoo, barfi and pedas are made. In Tamil Nadu, the offerings are as follows:

Pachai arisi idli 
Aval pori with jaggery and coconut (for Homam and prasadam)
Sadham(rice)Nei(ghee), paruppu, 

Thursday, September 3, 2015

UNNIAPPAM / UNNIYAPPAM (KERALA STYLE)

HOW TO MAKE UNNIAPPAM

Unniappam has almost the same ingredients as neiyappam, with a slight variation of adding mashed ripe bananas and fried in coconut oil. It can also be deep-fried in ghee. Unniappam is a traditional kerala prasadam in temples and also offered to the Lord during festivals.

INGREDIENTS:

Rice flour - 1 1/2 cups
Small ripe bananas - 2 (I used elakki variety)
Crushed jaggery - 3/4 cup
Water - 1/4 cup (or as needed)
Cardamom powder - 1 tsp
Dry ginger powder / Sukku podi - 1 tsp.
Sesame seeds (white or black) - 1 tsp. (optional)
Chopped Coconut bits - 3 tsp.
Coconut Oil / Ghee - to deep fry



HOW TO MAKE UNNIAPPAM

METHOD:


Dry roast the rice flour until hot. Heat a ladle of water, melt jaggery, strain the impurities, keep aside. Mash the bananas. Ghee fry the coconut bits. Dry roast the sesame seeds.

Mix rice powder, jaggery syrup, mashed banana and grind together to form a semi-thick, smooth batter. (Add water as and when needed). Add fried coconut bits, sesame seeds, dry ginger powder, cardamom powder and mix well. Heat coconut oil or ghee in an "appakaral"(appam mould), pour the batter to 3/4th of the holes. Ensure medium heat. When the bottom portion is light brown in colour, flip with stick or spoon to the other side and cook until golden brown on both sides. Take them out and drain in a kitchen towel. Pour some more ghee / oil while doing the next batch. Kerala unniappam is ready to offer to the Lord.

NOTE:
Do not keep the stove in high flame. Be careful not to burn the appams.
Make sure to have ghee/oil in each of the hole while making the other batches.